GONZAGA

No. 18 Gonzaga withstands scare from Kent St for 73-66 win

Dec 5, 2022, 8:56 PM

              Kent State center Cli'Ron Hornbeak, center, comes down from his dunk between Gonzaga forwards Anton Watson, left, and Ben Gregg during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Spokane, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
            
              Kent State head coach Rob Senderoff directs his team during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Gonzaga, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Spokane, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
            
              Gonzaga head coach Mark Few directs his team during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against Kent State, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Spokane, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
            
              Kent State guard Giovanni Santiago (11) controls the ball while defended by Gonzaga forward Ben Gregg (33) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Spokane, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
            
              Kent State forward Miryne Thomas, right, prepares to shoot while defended by Gonzaga guard Julian Strawther during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Spokane, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)
            
              Gonzaga forward Drew Timme, left, shoots while defended by Kent State center Cli'Ron Hornbeak during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game, Monday, Dec. 5, 2022, in Spokane, Wash. (AP Photo/Young Kwak)

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Drew Timme scored 29 points and grabbed 17 rebounds, and No. 18 Gonzaga closed the game on an 11-0 run to rally past Kent State 73-66 on Monday night.

Gonzaga 73, Kent State 66: Box score

The nation’s longest home win streak was extended to 69 games but not without a major scare by the Golden Flashes. Kent State led 66-62 with 3:38 left after Miryne Thomas’ 3-pointer, but the Bulldogs tightened on the defensive end and got a handful of big plays offensively to hold off the Flashes.

Julian Strawther added 14 points, including a 3-pointer with 3:19 left that started Gonzaga’s decisive run. Timme’s spinning basket in the lane with 2:29 left gave Gonzaga (6-3) the lead, and he added a key defensive play blocking Sincere Carry’s layup attempt at the other end.

Timme was fouled and split free throws with 1:55 left, but Malachi Smith grabbed the offensive rebound and his three-point play gave the Bulldogs a 71-66 lead. It was Smith’s first basket of the game.

Nolan Hickman added 10 points and seven rebounds for the Bulldogs, who held a 43-30 advantage on the boards.

Thomas led Kent State (6-3) with 16 points, including four 3-pointers. Malique Jacobs added 11 points and Carry, who was averaging 18.5 points per game, was held to 10.

Kent State nearly pulled off a surprising upset on the road for the second time in two weeks but couldn’t withstand Gonzaga’s late surge. Kent State led No. 1 Houston by one-point with less than a minute to go nine days ago in Houston but couldn’t make the plays in the closing seconds to finish off the upset in a 49-44 loss.

JERSEY RETIRED

Kelly Olynyk’s No. 13 jersey number was retired in front of a sellout crowd. Olynyk played for Gonzaga from 2009-13 and led the Bulldogs to its first ever No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament while earning first team AP All-American status as a senior.

“You’re almost speechless,” Olynyk said. “It’s just such an honor, especially with the names that you’re up beside. They’re unbelievable players.”

BIG PICTURE

Kent State: The Golden Flashes lost their third game of the season and their second against a ranked opponent. Kent State has three non-conference games left before beginning Mid-American Conference play at home against Western Michigan.

Gonzaga: The Bulldogs bounced back from a one-point loss to No. 12 Baylor last week with the win. All three of Gonzaga’s losses are to teams ranked in the top 12 of the AP Poll.

UP NEXT

Kent State: At Cleveland State on Saturday.

Gonzaga: Host face in-state rival Washington on Friday.

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